Featured itinerary: Pacific coast splendour
Note: Only Parks Canada-administered sites will be offering free admission in 2017. Visitors must pay entrance fees in sites managed by third parties.
7 days - From Fort Langley to Vancouver Island
Vancouver to Steveston - 30 km
Experience the early days of the west coast fishing industry at the Gulf of Georgia Cannery Historic Site! Discover the various methods of fishing and salmon canning. Explore the herring reduction plant. Listen to fascinating fishing stories. Let yourself be charmed by the picturesque fishing village of Steveston.
Fort Langley - 60 km
Continue on to Fort Langley, birthplace of the colony of British Columbia, and spend the night in an oTENTik in a real 19th century Canadian fort.
Fort Langley to Vancouver - 48 km
Become a Hudson’s Bay Company worker circa 1800s at Fort Langley National Historic Site. Mingle with fur traders, become a blacksmith, practice barrel-making, visit the farm animals and pan for gold, you might just strike it rich!
Ferry to Swartz Bay - 1 hr 45
Stroll through the village before continuing on to Vancouver. Sail through the rocky Gulf Islands archipelago on the ferry from Vancouver to Swartz Bay.
Sidney - 3 km
Pitch your tent at Sidney’s McDonald Campground in Gulf Islands National Park Reserve, the ideal base camp for exploring the islands.
Ready for adventure? Go for a one-day outing at your own pace on Saturna Island. Walk or drive to Mount Warburton Pike’s summit and enjoy astonishing views of the Gulf Islands stretched out before you. Be sure to go to East Point for some whale watching from dry land! Be on the lookout; you might even see orcas. Remember to bring your camera! While you are there, visit the Heritage Centre and learn about the history of the island. Enjoy a spectacular sunset before heading back to the ferry for Sidney.
Plan your travels before you leave; consult the ferry schedule.
How about a relaxing day at the beach? Climb aboard a walk-on passenger ferry for Sidney Island and cruise across Sidney Channel. In no time at all, you will be gleefully slipping out of your shoes and walking along on the warm sand for kilometres. Enjoy a picnic while admiring the turquoise waters off Sidney Spit! It makes for an ideal day of relaxing, kite flying and building majestic sand castles. Don’t forget your binoculars; Sidney Island is a true paradise for bird-watchers. Intrigued by nature? Once back at Sidney, stop by the Shaw Centre for the Salish Sea, the local aquarium, and discover local marine life secrets with Parks Canada interpreters.
Sidney to Victoria - 30 km
En route to the provincial capital! Have breakfast in the Victoria Harbour area and visit an array of shops in the little floating houses. Spend your morning strolling through narrow streets in the City’s old districts. Be sure to check out Chinatown, Canada’s oldest and most colourful Chinese neighbourhood. Sample English style tea and enjoy a plate of fish and chips before heading to Fort Rodd Hill, only a few kilometres from downtown. Spend the night in a Parks Canada oTENTik in the oldest artillery fort on Canada’s west coast.
Go discover Fort Rodd Hill and Fisgard Lighthouse Historic Sites. Explore secret bunkers, military command posts and 19th century buildings at Fort Rodd Hill. Listen to moving stories of soldiers and their families. In the summer, get an introductory lesson in target shooting using a replica WWII machine gun. Remember to bring earplugs for the shooting demonstration, Canada’s loudest military history lesson! Explore the site as evening approaches and visitors head home. Make your way to the lighthouse to watch the sunset and revel in a night around the campfire.
Victoria to Swartz Bay - 37 km
After waking up to the sound of birds singing, sip your morning coffee while admiring the sunrise at Fisgard Lighthouse. Take a walk through Garry Oak Meadow, a paradise of wildflowers. Discover the Camassia, a plant used as a food source by First Nations peoples. Have a seaside snack before heading to Swartz Bay to catch the ferry back to Vancouver.